Bass Solo's

Tips on how to make a solo and how to totally shred it.

6
Most bassist don't even get to show there talent during a show. All they do is stand out of the spotlight and thwack away at the E and A strings. Well I'm tired of that and hopefully you are too! Music is all about expressing yourself, and that's why you need to show your chops. I'm not going to tell you that all bass solo's have to be part of a scale, but I think it's important to include some scaling in your solo. Let's Start out of a C major scale.
G|-----------2-4-5-
D|-----2-3-5-------
A|-3-5-------------
E|-----------------
Now let's add some notes in between
G|------------2424-5-
D|-----2323-5--------
A|-3-5---------------
E|-------------------
Here's were you can add different parts of a bass solo. Either chords, speed, or slap/octaves. (I'm leaving out tapping, because I haven't mastered that yet)

Chords


G|------------2424-5-5-4-----5-4---4-
D|-----2323-5--------3-2-4---3-2-4-2-
A|-3-5-------------------2-------2---
E|-----------------------------------

Speed


G|------------2424-5-55553333--------
D|-----2323-5----------------55553-2-
A|-3-5-------------------------------
E|-----------------------------------

Slap/Octave

(s=Slap, p=Pop)
G|------------2424-5----5p------------5p----4p-
D|-----2323-5------------------5p--------------
A|-3-5---------------3s------------3s----2s----
E|------------------------3s-------------------
There's a nice easy solo for you. I find most bass solo's come from using doodling around the fretboard or improv.

Effects

Some people find that using distortion or other effects may pump up a solo. I agree and disagree. Using an effect is great, but don't overuse it. If all your solo's are distortioned, what's the point, anyone can hit a couple notes on distortion and sound like Cliff Burton. I hope this helped you in your pursuit of face-melting, bass-pounding, guitar player-killing solos. Rock On!

55 comments sorted by best / new / date

comments policy
    ChipsnFish
    Lemurs4mangos wrote: 10-1 you can't play as good as Cliff. 10-1 you wrote this lesson to feel better about your own skills (what little is there) and you're mad because you feel you can never match up to those of us that have dedication to our music.
    Then why are you here???? Just because YOU need help with YOUR solos, no need to slag him off just to make yourself feel better about your own musical skills. and yeah, he did insult cliff for a reason. it was to put the point across that distortion is not the way forward. Cliff burtons solos sound ok, but look at the tabs for them. it doesn't take much past grade 2 to play that. Bass solos are NOT about playing fast!! They're supposed to be just like "Suck that bitches" ito the listeners faces. Not all about slides and shit. anyone with a finger can do a slide, but not everyone with a finger can write an amazing BASS solo.
    jakedavison wrote: Dude FUCK Cliff !!!! he made the bass sound like a guitar!
    see, someone who speaks sense. Bass is not a guitar. And playing guitar on bass is for peple who are not skilled enough to play the actual guitar. /angry rant.
    bassplayerdur
    you can't "just sound like cliff burton". His effects and styles were the most unique i've ever heard! and belive me, i've been trying to sound like him forever, but he used such unique effects, it's damn hard!
    Dethfret
    this isn't about Cliff Burton, this is about bass solo's. Cry somewhere else, this is for learning
    Whichidesire
    He(/She) didn't insult Cliff, because everyone knows that it's not true. R.I.P. Cliff
    gonji1989
    Beginner Bass wrote: Fusanti_RHCP wrote: You insulted Cliff Burton... With good reason.
    There is no "good" reason to insult a bass legend. Especially one who has passed away. R.I.P Cliff Burton
    Antei69
    my adive to soloing is this: Learn Majors and Minors(scales), Learn octaves then you can do what ever you want!
    rioter78
    [quote]fleajr_1412 wrote: I agree. Stop whining about Cliff Burton. He's dead, get over it. This isn't the place. Dude just bcause ur not a fan of Metallica doesn't mean that u hav 2 ****ing b an ***** bout it, we lost a great ****in bassist. R.I.P Cliff Burton.
    audwin09
    How much does a bass guitar costs??? I play bass but just 4 string bass... and I'm planning to buy a bass guitar, whats the best bass guitar that I can buy, I don't care if it's expensive... does anyone know???
    fleajr_1412
    I agree. Stop whining about Cliff Burton. He's dead, get over it. This isn't the place. I'm in no way an expert at soloing, but I'd say there's a little to it than that. But with the concepts in the lesson you could probably make a half decent bass solo.
    mister alex
    Have fun fapping to some of Cliff's solos: I'll be listening to Les Claypool. Cliff is not a god. He's dedicated, and awesome at playing bass, yet there's no reason to throw a fit. Plus, this lesson obviously wasn't meant for higher experienced solos. It's a great lesson to set the foundation.
    SonOfArachnae
    Damn, I thought this community would be nice, not full of asses. People need to relax and just enjoy the music.
    christianonbass
    There is a difference between "Sound" and how someone PLAYS. He said "Sound" like Cliff, not play like him. And ALL solos, riffs and songs are derived from "Wimpy" scales. I am assuming that I am older than most people here, so here is something to help you improve no matter how "Good" you are: I try to identify what a person is trying to teach me and what I can learn from the person rather than how I can insult him/her. Everyone has faults, it's not my job to complain about it. This goes for life in general, not just playing music.
    metallicamadmik
    Lemurs4mangos wrote: Dude... Cliff was a bass god. and all these solos are worthless.
    a-****in-men dude. a-****in-men rip cliff burton most headbangin mother****er known to man!
    salvation_bass
    for people who said words against cliff burton TRY PLAYING ANESTHESIA,THEN TALK TRASH ABOUT HIM.HE IS DEAD....BUT THE THINGS HE DID AND MADE ARE STILL ALIVE AND ARE MOST TALKED ABOUT. R.I.P BURTON
    insanitycalls
    yer i agree. this is a lesson on writing a bass solo. im sure he didnt mean to insult cliff and im sure most of you have better things to do than bitching about it. get over it. thanks Wicked_Bassist7
    sfedf1
    Waha nice lesson but if have spent any time improvising on bass guitar you usually figure this out yourself... wish I had this a few months back it would have help about Cliff Burton it's true and not at the same time depends what you consider a cliff burton solo say the intro to For Whom The Bell Tolls or some parts of Orion aren't exactly a solo but watch some live solo and i think you'll understand that it's not just distortion it also crazy speed RIP Cliff
    iron_maiden_15
    oh my god so much idiots here -.- First: YOU CANT INSULT CLIFF! Second: THIS GUY WHO WANTS TO BUY BASS GUITAR, IT DOESNT FUCKING MATTER WHICH GUITAR ARE YOU GOING TO BUY. IF YOU CANT EXPRESS YOURSELVE WITH MUSIC YOU WILL SUCK ON 3 MILION DOLLARS BASS AS SAME AS ON 3 DOLLAR BASS. SO, IF YOU WANT TO PLAY YOU NEED TO KNOW THAT ITS NOT ABOUT YOUR EXPENSIVE GUITAR, ITS ABOUT YOU!!!!!
    andrasiboti
    gonji1989 wrote: Beginner Bass wrote: Fusanti_RHCP wrote: You insulted Cliff Burton... With good reason. There is no "good" reason to insult a bass legend. Especially one who has passed away. R.I.P Cliff Burton
    Agreed!
    jake_lane
    Bassist in need of HELP..... anyone interested?!?! im confused just need basics
    Bert_the_Bear
    "anyone can hit a couple notes on distortion and sound like Cliff Burton." Haha, touch. Damn, people. Where's your sense of humor? A clever joke like that shouldn't bring up this much anger. Cliff Burton was a good musician, that's for sure. But that doesn't make him the bass god you can't mess with. Truth is, this lesson is a good start for people about to get into soloing, which is exactly what this lesson is for. He didn't claim any of those solo's to be 'better than Cliff Burton', they're basic examples of what you could do. This lesson has taught us a second thing too: how blinded by anger some people get after a single sentence they don't agree with.
    Duke von Rock
    Bert_the_Bear wrote: "anyone can hit a couple notes on distortion and sound like Cliff Burton." Haha, touch. Damn, people. Where's your sense of humor? A clever joke like that shouldn't bring up this much anger. Cliff Burton was a good musician, that's for sure. But that doesn't make him the bass god you can't mess with. Truth is, this lesson is a good start for people about to get into soloing, which is exactly what this lesson is for. He didn't claim any of those solo's to be 'better than Cliff Burton', they're basic examples of what you could do. This lesson has taught us a second thing too: how blinded by anger some people get after a single sentence they don't agree with.
    Well, I'm actually more pissed off about the fact that this "lesson" is basically USELESS... "Hey... Play scales", yeah... That's really gonna help our soloing... Instead, maybe you should write about the more subtle things in bass soloing, and what separates them from guitar solos, which is the very reason I read this... And also, instead of commenting a specific artist's choice of sound, maybe write "distortion isn't everything" or something similar, otherwise, you're just a troll!
    TS-Genocide
    Actually this is all solid advice. Know your theory, explore the possabilities, and never think that you cant be as good as cliff or any other famous musicians becuase you can if you work hard enough
    Mr.Tea
    Cool, need to learn how to do bass solo's, but isn't their a specific way to solo on bass that's unlike a guitar?
    MarksBTrelle
    If you want to hear nice bass solos listen to Metallica, Red Hot Chili Peppers or just Jazz
    bluffmaster710
    wow yall r talking abou t popping and doing all tht stuff i can barely read tabs can sum1 help? BASSIST IN TROUBLE!!
    AngelWolf
    "anyone can hit a couple notes on distortion and sound like Cliff Burton" ...Fuck You
    bass_masta123
    he/she didnt insult cliff burton they wwer jus sayin adding distortion and slappin up a few notes is easy ne1 can do it rip cliff burton
    wakeke
    nice lesson.. cliff burton's solo sounded alright with effects
    da_nostalgia
    tnx alot.. can i have more bass solo? hehehe.. can u also give me a tip in playing bass??
    bassplayerdur
    you used a wimpy c major scale for a solo? what is wrong with you? there are so many other thing you could do!
    BBallin1337
    audwin09 wrote: How much does a bass guitar costs??? I play bass but just 4 string bass... and I'm planning to buy a bass guitar, whats the best bass guitar that I can buy, I don't care if it's expensive... does anyone know???
    Go here: http://www.guitarcenter.com/Bass.gc My bass cost a little over 700, it's a shecter diamond series. Its pretty nice.
    Lemurs4mangos
    10-1 you can't play as good as Cliff. 10-1 you wrote this lesson to feel better about your own skills (what little is there) and you're mad because you feel you can never match up to those of us that have dedication to our music.